Here's my list of unfinished projects

lobsterbirdMay 3, 2007

As I've been rooting around the basement (looking at extension cords and plugs, etc.) I came across some paperwork that reminded me of yet another unfinished project hanging over my head. A lot of these projects I associate with home decorating, but some tasks remain unfinished due to lack of motivation and organization. So, in the interest of coming clean, here's a short list of my incomplete projects:

Prepare home inventory list and pics for insurance purposes

Repair hall lamp or replace (it is old and one piece is hard to find but I haven't exhausted potential local sources)

Hang several pieces of art/photos

Replace Sunbeam Mixmaster cord

Hook up stereo in sitting room (run wires to speakers)

Complete family photo albums - it was a huge project and I'm not that far from done, but haven't been back to it in almost a year

Sell old print (ebay? consign?)

Decide what to do with unfinished quilt (pay someone to do it? - There is an emotional attachment to this project)

Replace several paper lamp shades with silk shades (waiting for extra cash)

Reupholster living room chair (looking for perfect fabric, but also waiting for extra cash)

Frame and mat grandfather's architectural drawing and historical map (need cash)

Reframe two oil paintings (need cash)

Paint small bedroom

Determine how I want to decorate master bedroom

Decide whether to keep vintage lamp I bought for master bedroom - if so, get shade for it

Organize clothes, shoes, drawers, and closets (I've thrown/given stuff away over the last couple of years but the situation is still far from ideal)

Looking at this list makes me feel overwhelmed. Some things cost money and need to wait a bit, and I'm ok with that. However, some of these tasks don't cost a dime, but require lots of little steps and chunks of time. I'm going to make a master list and post it near my mini office. If I ever feel the need for retail therapy (yes, I admit to doing this occasionally), perhaps I can purchase something I've been waiting for instead of shopping in an unfocused way. I can prioritize the tasks that don't require money, and then take the top item and break the task down into manageable steps. When I have free time I will know what I'm working on and where I am in the process.

I need to either forget about some these unfinished projects or start making them a priority. I am tired of the emotional weight they carry.

Anybody else have a list? Any ideas or suggestions?


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some tasks remain unfinished due to lack of motivation

This may be a clue that you shouldn't do these particular things.

Either that YOU shouldn't do them (hire someone), or that they don't need to be done at all.

I might take a list like yours (which has many non-urgent things) and pick ONE item off of it to accomplish in the next 2 weeks. And set aside a time at which to do the first component of it in the first week.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 4:04PM
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Oh, I don't even want to think about my "list". I want to live in denial a little bit longer. I too would be completely overwhelmed. I am my own worst enemy with way too many ideas and not enough follow through. I understand about some of the items being home decorating. But if you don't get those done it does lead to a feeling of being disorganized. I'll cheer you on while I hide my head in the sand!

    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 10:06PM
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Can I make a suggestion on the first? While an inventory list would be a good idea, it would take a lot of time and thinking. The photos on the other hand are fairly simple. Open every drawer or storage area wide open and snap away. Store the prints in a safety deposit box. Repeat every few years.

I'm not suggesting you don't ever do the listing, just that the photos themselves will be a fairly good documentation and memory jogger on their own.

    Bookmark   May 3, 2007 at 10:12PM
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List. Yech. I have had the same list for years under my computer mouse pad. Couple big things like refitting my pantry and scraping popcorn ceilings (vaulted unfortunately) and retiling the porch (the drunk monkeys who built this place used wall tile-the slippery kind), and build media shelving for the basement. I hate the list.

But then I see some big ones I *have* gotten done: refinishing kitchen cabinets, cleaning and restaining the deck, repairing the drywall and ceiling after the leaky skilites were fixed...

Then I don't hate the list so much.

Stuff takes time. And energy. And money. Get to it when you get to it.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 12:40AM
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When we moved into our house it was probably 80% completed. I think I've gotten it to 85% in over two years. I'm amazed how I can walk by bare light bulbs dangling from cords with no fixture in sight and I don't even see it anymore. DH asked if I was planning on getting the bathrooms finished. I said, "Sure. I plan on selling this house in about 15 years, so I'm sure I'll find someone to finish them before then."

I made a list of things which needed completing on a room by room basis. I found it so overwhelming that I threw it away.

I have to admit that until I can find the people to hire to get these things done, they will just stay that way.


    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 2:22AM
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liz h -- Smart thinking! Taking photos will get things documented, which is the important thing. They would help me remember stuff if I had to submit a claim. If I get the chance to make the list, so much the better. Thanks. This is now the top item on my list.

Celtic and Gloria -- Thanks for providing that perspective. I have to remind myself that things can be accomplished over time. And we have completed so much work on this house. I get impatient sometimes. My second floor hall was in a rough state for four years, but last year I finally finished all the plaster repair and my husband painted. We've been here 11 years and I just want the renovation and decorating projects to be done. Here's a couple of before and after pics of the upstairs hall. Maybe we should start a thread so folks can pat themselves on the back and share what they've completed.


    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 12:43PM
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I have been getting to some of the things that have been on my list recently, finally.

One was setting up electronic payments for as many things as possible; I did that a few days ago.

Another was getting both of my pianos tuned. I set that up for today, and the tuner will be here this afternoon.

Another that I've been procrastinating on forever is getting new blinds for our bedroom and the two bathrooms. We have these stained and falling apart plastic miniblinds left by the POs; these rooms absolutely need blinds for privacy, but it took me a while to figure out what kind I wanted to get. I finally did that and the blinds guy is also coming here this afternoon (just before the piano tuner) to measure and show me samples so I can get an estimate.

I also decided on a plan for reorganizing our paper files; the solution involved buying a new file cabinet, which I did this morning (to be delivered Monday).

I find that if I take a day off of work (like I did today) and plan to take care of some of these PITA things then, I can get more done than when I try to fit them in around a normal work day.

    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 2:03PM
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Whoa!!! Tina -- really excellent transformation!!!

You really should post this project Before-and-After on the Decorating Forum -- it would so help many folks there too to see your wonderful ideas!

Way to go! :)

    Bookmark   May 4, 2007 at 7:30PM
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